President Barack Obama has a knack for quelling folk’s fears through rhetoric. When his opponents said he was inexperienced, he countered them by characterizing himself as the “fresh air” Washington needed after being pillaged by Beltway insiders. When Black folks questioned his Blackness, he adopted a more homiletic tone in some of his speeches. When the media asked if could he handle the rough and tumble of national politics, he assured everyone that he was tough because he was from the Southside of Chicago. We all knew what Barack meant by this comment. As Congress enters recess I have to give Obama his “props”. Anyone who can deal with Nancy Pelosi, Fox News, “The Birthers”, and all other political hacks and come out composed is a tough person.
As I sat back and reflected on the political environment Barack Obama has had to work in, it became clear that he was a strong guy. In less than two years he has had his patriotism, nationality, race, and religion put on trial by the court of public opinion. But thus far he’s come out the victor. That is saying a lot for a country where the criminal justice system favors Blacks about as much as Paris Hilton favors chastity.
These issues have for the most part been proxies for a referendum on the comfort of Americans with a Black President. I’m almost happy Obama has endured all this insanity. Although none of these groups that promulgate these bogus theories that Obama is a Muslim or was born in Kenya are credible, it’s obvious that they got traction. A recent poll released by Kos/Research shows that 28% of Republicans don’t believe President Obama was born in the United States of America and 30% were unsure. Even after the Hawaii Health Department produced his birth certificate, and even after a resolution proclaiming Hawaii to be Obama’s birthplace was unanimously passed by the US House of Representatives detractors still squabbled. This is a good indicator to the World that race relations have not yet healed in the United States. But in the word’s of Jay-Z “if you feeling like a pimp n**** gone brush ya shoulder’s off”.
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